#happyfourth

This past weekend was perfection. It was absolutely everything that my introverted self needed to relax and recharge!

For starters, my best friend flew into town Thursday night. As soon as we got back from the airport, we stopped for food and then went to her favorite place for ice cream. (Confession: we visited this same ice cream place three times over the weekend. THREE. TIMES. I have no regrets.)

I turned off my alarm for Friday morning (for the first time in weeks!) so that we could sleep in and then we leisurely made our way into town for breakfast at one of my favorite spots. 20160701_102148-01.jpegIt’s not anything fancy, but they bake fresh bagels all day long and have AMAZING coffee. I got the Eggwich with provolone cheese on an asiago cheese bagel and then tried their Dutch Almond Pastry flavored coffee. Which was so incredible, I may have refilled my cup before leaving.

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She loved it, too! Isn’t she a cutie? Her husband called to check up on her while we were chatting, so I snapped this candid.

We sat and chatted in this cafe for hours before leaving to stroll around the shops in town. There’s an adorable little bookshop here that I can spend hours in and I dragged her along with me. There’s something about small town bookshops that is so irresistibly charming.

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Later on in the afternoon, we visited her favorite pizza place and ordered takeout so that we could continue to enjoy the beautiful weather. (Another confession: we ate at this place more than once over the weekend. Again, no regrets.)

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The sun was gorgeous, but it was nice and breezy so it wasn’t too hot! I really don’t like being out when it’s boiling, so this was an amazing afternoon!

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Post-pizza happiness. The sun is too bright in this photo to see the beach, but I promise it’s there!

After we ate, we went to watch a new Jane Austen movie at this indie-film theater. I’m not sure how we heard about it, but we’re both huge Jane Austen fans (we may have spent an embarrassing amount of time in our childhood reciting Pride & Prejudice to each other) and we were super excited to see a new movie adaptation to one of her books!

20160701_195152-01The film was based on “Lady Susan” and was, unexpectedly, hilarious! Not that Jane Austen isn’t humorous as a writer, but there was not “lovey-dovey” scenes in this entire film. It was just straight comedy and I loved every minute of it.

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Also, the theater was PACKED full of retirees and I think that made this experience even more quaint. I’m definitely keeping this place in mind for future adventures!

I got a little caught up in having fun for the rest of the weekend, and forgot to document it with my camera! But it was more of the same relaxed, slow-paced adventuring that I so badly needed.

Saturday, we ate lunch and spent the afternoon with my parents before coming back to our apartment and cooking Colombian food with my roommate and drinking mojitos whil playing games. Then we spent most of Sunday boating on the lake with friends and finished it with a movie at home. I enjoyed every single moment and was so grateful for this time to spend with friends and family! I intentionally did not think about job hunting or finances or anything that was remotely related to adult worries.

Now, I’m ready again for reality 🙂

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enough

Can I be frank? I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what it means to “be enough.” Or, rather, life has been forcing me to question this phrase. And, as I sit here in this adorable coffee shop, my mind keeps wandering back to this question.

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It’s been an interesting summer. Working in the school system means I get summers off, but, because I don’t yet have a salaried/contract position, I have been looking for summer work as well as applying for classroom teaching positions for fall. Now, I don’t mean this to brag, but just to further explain my scenario – I started my first job in high school at 15 and I’ve been working ever since. I was always a diligent student, both in high school and college, and I worked to give both my academic and professional life 100%. (Don’t get me wrong–I’m a huge procrastinator and love spending time with friends, so there were many days that I didn’t start school projects til after midnight because I’d been out with friends. But, regardless of what time of day or night I was working, I always ended up being prepared on time although probably severely deficient in sleep!) I graduated with honors and good recommendations from my professors and my employer. Along the way, it never occurred to me that things in life would not continue to come naturally. My past experiences taught me that if I put in my best effort, I would be rewarded with what I wanted.

I know, I can hear how spoiled self-entitled I sound.

Welcome, summer 2016 and the giant reality check you’ve given me. It’s been two and a half weeks since school ended and I’ve been job searching. I’ve applied at every place I can think of in this town. From clerical work to waitress positions, I’ve submitted my resume. I recently started looking online for telecommuting jobs like transcribing or proofreading. My success rate so far has been a giant zero.

I’ve also applied to 12 or 13 teaching positions, and every day that I check the employment page, I’m just seeing positions being filled by other applicants. Let me just tell you, the starry-eyed graduate who couldn’t stop smiling as she received her diploma last year did not anticipate this. At all.

Amid the rejections, I started feeling like there was something wrong with me. That I wasn’t…enough. And then, with a start, I wondered how on earth I had gotten to a point where I attached my value, my sense of self-worth, to the opinions of people I’ve never met. Or, perhaps more importantly, who have never met me.

To go even further, why am I attaching my self-worth to the opinions of anyone?

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It’s a weird time in my life. Newly graduated, new apartment, new city. It’s very exciting and a little scary and I’m learning that with the thrill of independence comes a fear of failure. Or, the fear of being a failure.

So, this is where I am. I don’t have answers. I still don’t have a job. And I still don’t feel great about this. But, I’m learning to be very intentional about how I assess my value. Or, for starters, at least be aware of the unfair way I’ve been assessing my value. My employment status doesn’t affect my character. It doesn’t speak of who I am.

Anyone else dealing with these kinds of feelings? What do you do to keep your sanity and stay positive?

As I’m typing this, my childhood best friend is on a plane flying in to visit me for a long weekend, so I’m psyched to spend a weekend with her and let go of these worries for a few days!

One last thing–this adorable coffee shop is under the reign of this equally adorable puppy, who fell asleep under the table across from where I’m sitting.

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inspire

A few days ago, I started feeling a little restless and was considering making a Tinder account again and, being so tired of writing up short bios with too many exclamation marks, I started searching for a quote I could just copy and paste. I know, this sounds lazy. But also effective!

So, I took to Pinterest (cue hours of getting distracted researching) and started searching for quotes by my favorite authors, inspirational leaders, and then just “inspirational quotes about _____”. To be honest, things got pretty cheesy on some of these searches! But, while searching, I found so many gems that genuinely inspired me and were a huge mood lifter! Here are my 5 top favorites:

  1. “I began to realize how important it was to be an enthusiast in life. He taught me that if you are interested in something, no matter what it is, go at it at full speed ahead. Embrace it with both arms, hug it, love it and above all become passionate about it. Lukewarm is no good.” – Roald Dahl
  2. “There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.” – C.S. Lewis
  3. “All that is gold does not glitter. Not all those who wander are lost. The old that is strong does not wither, deep roots are not reached by the frost.” – J.R.R. Tolkien
  4. “The most important thing in life is to stop saying ‘I wish’ and start saying ‘I will.’ Consider nothing impossible, then treat possibilites as probabilities.” – Charles Dickens
  5. “It isn’t what we say or think that defines us, but what we do.” – Jane Austen

Is it just me, or does anyone else get a wave of empowerment after reading through inspirational quotes? After my Pinterest binge, I felt ready to conquer the world! Ha. I settled for a hot cup of tea and a half hour in a book, but it was a great feeling.

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Sidenote: I didn’t use any of these for Tinder. I didn’t even get around to making the account. Typical.

 

 

hello

Hello! I’m Marthita. I’m a Californian at heart, but I’ve been living in southwest Michigan for the past 5 years! On days when I’m feeling homesick, I visit Lake Michigan and pretend it’s the Pacific (which usually works, unless we’re in the middle of our 5 months of winter…). But, in all honesty, I do love the area and I’ve met a ton of great people here!

I enjoy being outdoors, especially at the lake, whether we’re out on the water or just hanging out at the beach, but I also enjoy having a lazy afternoon indoors. I love to travel and explore new places (new countries, new cities, or even just new restaurants and coffee shops)!

Ultimately, it’s the smaller moments in life that have brought me the most joy. Things like having meaningful conversations over a cup of coffee or being able to laugh together over something funny (or even embarrassing) are the moments that make me feel closest to people.

I just finished my undergraduate course in December and since then I’ve moved out of my parent’s house, moved into an apartment with a roommate in a new city, and I’ve started working full time. I’m starting this blog to help me find a little bit of stability (sanity?) in the midst of all this change!